It's the end of the first week for me in my new role as the Manager of Application Services with my employer. I spent the last three years managing the Database & Midrange group with the same employer before given this opportunity to take over the application development & support group. It was a short week for me as I took a day vacation in conjunction with Canada Day and went camping with the family. That was great as I didn't bring along my Blackberry and turned off my personal cellphone for the duration of the trip.
My first week was mainly spent on restructuring discussions with the CIO and other IS managers and I think we have a good first draft, meeting individually with each of the employees to get to know them, understand their roles & responsibilities, their challenges, and their perspectives on what is not working and what is working. So far, it's 6 down and another 24 to go. The first couple of days, it took me a while to stop going back to the DB group as a matter of habit and referring to the acting Supervisor instead of going directly to the DBAs.
In the meanwhile, in the Oracle Bloggersphere, Tim Hall and Steven Chan got their articles stolen by folks who have no morals and yet so "stupid" as to leave references pointing back to the original article. For those of you who don't know already, the world is becoming a very small place and while you might work locally, your reputation might not. As an employer, I do use the Internet search engines to reference potential candidates who applied for employment or contract work and I can bet you that I am not the only who does this.
I like that Oracle kind of responded to Mark Brinsmead's open letter to Larry Ellison on opening up access to AWR and ASH data as a matter of promoting the product. I am big fan of Oracle's policy of allowing free download of their software (full versions) for research and personal use as it promotes and allow the Oracle community to try out new features and basically play around with the product to see what it can do and what is possible. These translates into the same folks applying what they have learned in their workplace (possibly generating additional revenue for Oracle).
Another thing to check out is Lex de Haan and Toon Koppelaars' new book on "Applied Mathematics for DB Professionals" and apparently it won't be an easy read as you will need to have a Mathematics background and most IT professionals do (after all, you have to learn how to do binary, hexadecimal calculations) and if you are DB professional, more than likely you will have a basic grasp of set and logic theories.
Oh, before I forget, I recently attended a half day seminar (actually only stayed an hour or so because of prior commitments) held by Oracle, NetApps and one of their local partners. I learned more about NetApps but I can tell you that I was not too happy with the Oracle presentation component as the presenter kept putting down DB2, SQLServer and other databases which I thought was pretty much classless and there were DB2 users there who might be interested in looking at getting Oracle/NetApps for their organizations but I can tell you that those attendees did looked too pleased at all. Think about it, a lot of organizations tend to have multiple database vendors and might have one preferred over others but if I am one where DB2 is preferred but am open to other databases for niche or specialized applications, I won't be too happy to have an Oracle employee trashing my preferred DB vendor (it will make it seems that I'm too stupid to give up a "bad" product for a better one). Note to Oracle marketing and sales, please do not bash other db vendors (you can compare products and featurs) but when you make it point to bash others, you are lowering your standards of conduct and give a very poor impression of the professionalism expected from a world-class organization.